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Ethnol ruining rubber fuel lines


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Any rubber tubing for gasoline that is  sold today should be alcohol resistant, but I would ask specifically.  I asked the other day and discovered that the hose he was selling me was not alcohol resistant.  He did have some that was and it was twice the price.  Price is insignificant when you are only buying a foot of hose.

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I don't know. Everyone seems to bitch about 10% ethanol/gasoline ruining every thing from their cars to their lawn mowers and for all I know their sex life. I have six collector cars, two driver cars, two lawn mowers, two chain saws, a string trimmer, a leaf blower, a stand by generator, and an ATV. They all get whatever the local gas stations are selling. I've  had ZERO issues with any of them that I can even remotely blame on the fuel. When I press the starter or pull the cord they run. When I turn off the spark they stop. They all seem to work very well and last a long time.................Bob

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8 hours ago, Bhigdog said:

I don't know. Everyone seems to bitch about 10% ethanol/gasoline ruining every thing from their cars to their lawn mowers and for all I know their sex life. I have six collector cars, two driver cars, two lawn mowers, two chain saws, a string trimmer, a leaf blower, a stand by generator, and an ATV. They all get whatever the local gas stations are selling. I've  had ZERO issues with any of them that I can even remotely blame on the fuel. When I press the starter or pull the cord they run. When I turn off the spark they stop. They all seem to work very well and last a long time.................Bob

 

Agree.  Same experience EXCEPT when driving through Nebraska or Iowa.  When I fill up with gas there I always get about 25% lower fuel economy.

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Ethanol in Florida is pretty much standard.  It ruins everything it touches in an old car and causes vapor lock as well when the temperature gets over 80-85, which is pretty much standard here.  I can only get real gas at one place 8 miles away.  It's horrible.  The '39 Buicks can't go out on the road without a backup electric fuel pump for that reason.  I only wish I'd never moved from Virginia to Florida.

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I had to replace every rubber hose, and the fuel pump (rubber diaphragm) in my '62 Vette because of a dumb choice of gas a few years ago. Last year I had to replace the rubber hose on the gas fill pipe to the tank. Must have overlooked it.  It was totally mush and could only have been caused by the ethanol crap also. I use ethanol in the mowers, and my only complaint is that a full tank will lose 1/3 to evaporation over a weeks time. Luckily we can get non-ethanol gas at quite a few stations. Not cheap, but better than repair bills.

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26 minutes ago, caddyshack said:

I use ethanol in the mowers, and my only complaint is that a full tank will lose 1/3 to evaporation over a weeks time.

 

Interesting......... Ethanol makes up only 10% of the full tank of fuel and yet accounts for 33% of the evaporation. ............................Bob

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14 hours ago, mike6024 said:

You might consider using the high-pressure fuel injection fuel line,

 

Why? That's completely unnecessary and brings it's own set of problems (like correct clamps and fittings). As noted above, pretty much all rubber hose sold today is ethanol compatible.  Just use the correct type of hose.  No need to re-engineer the fuel system or lose any sleep over this.

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13 hours ago, Bhigdog said:

I don't know. Everyone seems to bitch about 10% ethanol/gasoline ruining every thing from their cars to their lawn mowers and for all I know their sex life. I have six collector cars, two driver cars, two lawn mowers, two chain saws, a string trimmer, a leaf blower, a stand by generator, and an ATV. They all get whatever the local gas stations are selling. I've  had ZERO issues with any of them that I can even remotely blame on the fuel. When I press the starter or pull the cord they run. When I turn off the spark they stop. They all seem to work very well and last a long time.................Bob

 

Bob is right.  We are all imagining the chemistry issues ........and don't forget the boat owners,  some of whom have been killed by the effects on their fuel tanks (sadly, some boats have composite fuel tanks instead of metal)  ( those who have been killed ...or if they are lucky..only horribly burned when the stuff ate thru their gasoline tanks.....must have been imagining that too....! )    ( I personally am lucky...my Bayliner was built with metal fuel tanks)...

Edited by SaddleRider
asparagus (see edit history)
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I have a few two stroke motorcycles some road and some dirt. my only way of getting real gasoline is to pay an outrageous price at a local airport. I also have to have a storage area at home for real gasoline. I don't ride them often enough to keep fresh ethanol fuel in them and I don't want to go over the handlebars when  a piston locks up. I see all the tree removal people are buying their gas at the airport also.

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54 minutes ago, SaddleRider said:

 

Bob is right.  We are all imagining the chemistry issues ........and don't forget the boat owners,  some of whom have been killed by the effects on their fuel tanks (sadly, some boats have composite fuel tanks instead of metal)  ( those who have been killed ...or if they are lucky..only horribly burned when the stuff ate thru their gasoline tanks.....must have been imagining that too....! )    ( I personally am lucky...my Bayliner was built with metal fuel tanks)...

That's foolishness.  I've had one of my '39 Buicks since 1963 and the other since 1970 and neither one of them ever one time vapor locked until I had to start using Ethanol.  I never ever had or needed to have an electric fuel pump.  The Government gave no consideration to old car people or low income people when they demanded Ethanol, because old car people are few in comparison to the population.  Low income people generally need to drive older cars, and the Government in the past has never given those people much consideration.

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Ethanol  Vapor pressure: 5.95 kPa

 

Octane (regular gasoline) Vapor pressure    1.47 kPa

 

This is the chemical property that indicates how volatile the liquid is, how easily it evaporates. So you see ethanol evaporates more than three times faster. 

 

You can note the boiling point difference too, 173 for ethanol and 257 for octane.

 

Ethanol
Chemical compound
Ethanol, also called alcohol, ethyl alcohol, and drinking alcohol, is a compound and simple alcohol with the chemical formula C 2H 5OH. Its formula can be written also as CH 3−CH 2−OH or C 2H 5−OH, and is often abbreviated as EtOH. Wikipedia
Formula: C2H6O
Molar mass: 46.06844 g/mol
Boiling point: 173.1°F (78.37°C)
Density: 789 kg/m³
Melting point: -173.5°F (-114.1°C)
IUPAC ID: ethanol
Vapor pressure: 5.95 kPa

 

Octane
Chemical compound
Image result for octane chemical compound
Octane is a hydrocarbon and an alkane with the chemical formula C₈H₁₈, and the condensed structural formula CH₃(CH₂)₆CH₃. Octane has many structural isomers that differ by the amount and location of branching in the carbon chain. Wikipedia
Molar mass: 114.23 g/mol
Formula: C8H18
Boiling point: 257°F (125°C)
Density: 703 kg/m³

Vapor pressure    1.47 kPa

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1 hour ago, Frank DuVal said:

 

Earl (?) did you read Saddle rider's whole comment? I think you actually agree with his comments hidden in the humor he wrote!;)

 

It's never too late to do the right thing....:D

 

 

Tee   Hee   Hee!  ;)..............................Bob

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5 hours ago, Bhigdog said:

 

Interesting......... Ethanol makes up only 10% of the full tank of fuel and yet accounts for 33% of the evaporation. ............................Bob

Never was that good in math.

Maybe it was only 12.67531%. Will have to calibrate my gas can next. 

No, on the other hand, won't use the crap anymore. 

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I don't know if it is the ethanol or not but in the last 10 yrs i had to replace the rubber fuel line from the hard line to the fuel pump, just last week was the third time. i asked at the auto parts store for rubber line that the ethanol will not effect it. he sold me fuel injector line. $13.00 for three feet. worth it if I have no more problems. replaced the three lines up front. now I will relace the one from the fuel tank to the hard line. This is on my 63 Bonne. I will replace all the lines on my 63 GP that I am restoring

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8 minutes ago, GARY F said:

he sold me fuel injector line.

 

My experience has been most auto parts stores assume the customer is an idiot (probably not a bad assumption in most cases) and will sell you the high pressure EFI hose to avoid potential liability unless you force them to sell you the low pressure stuff and sign 20 disclaimers and releases of liability.

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I must lead a charmed life. I go into my NAPA store and say "Gimee 5 feet of 5/16 fuel line".  He cuts it off of the roll and says "That'll be five bucks". I go home and put it on the car. Been doing it that way for the last 60 some years.  Haven't changed a fuel line yet because of softening, leaking, or other wise failing other than plain old age...............Bob

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Well, Bob, this gets into what constitutes old age? I have changed many a fuel line that was soft. I recall doing this even back in real gasoline days. The complaints now are "old age" seems to be not so long as in the old days.:D 

 

So if it wasn't leaking, soft or failing, why DID you replace them? You have a preventative maintanence schedule where you change them every 4 years?

 

Here is an explanation of J30R  specifications.

 

http://www.underhoodservice.com/correct-fuel-hose-installation/

 

The J30R09 hose is what most people get the best life out of now with ethanol fuel. Yes, I still have cars running older hoses myself, just like you. But other of mine have had soft lines that I had to replace.  I do not know why some of these fuel lines are effected, and others are not. Some might be off the same roll (I stock 25 foot reels of all three sizes, never know when I need some at 11 pm! ;)).

 

Note for people working on newer cars, the fuel hose for the in tank pumps has to be J30R10. Even the J30R09 gets soft inside the fuel tank. BTDT, got the prize of dropping the tank again, never again!:o

 

Flex Fuel vehicles DO change the injector pulse width, timing, etc to match what fuel is in the tank.  One can not just put E85 into any car (even with J30R09 hoses) and expect it to perform right. Here is an explanation of how the computer senses what fuel is in the tank:

 

http://www.underhoodservice.com/getting-tanked-flex-fuel-engine-modifications-allow-for-alcohol-based-fuel/

 

Hope this helps, but probably just confused the issue.:blink:

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1 minute ago, Frank DuVal said:

if it wasn't leaking, soft or failing, why DID you replace them?

 

Usually when working on or around whatever they were connected to. Same as any other rubber part. Work on the generator and remove the belts? Notice they are age cracked? Still doing it's job but i'll replace Them. Flush the radiator? Might best replace the hoses. Fuel pump? Ditto. Rebuild the carb? Ditto.

Pretty basic maintenance practice.

And again, I have never had to replace a fuel hose for leakage due to fuel induced failure.

So you can quote whatever expert that pleases you but:

The fact remains: I have never had to replace a fuel hose for leakage due to fuel induced failure.

I may be the exception that proves the rule, but:

I have never had to replace a fuel hose due to fuel induced failure......................Bob

 

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Bob, I believe you never replaced a fuel hose due to fuel induced failure. I also believe you are replacing your rubber hoses/belts in a timely manner, like I do. Not all these hoses fail the "soft" way. As I mentioned, even the same hose off the same reel, some fail soft and most are fine for years. Temperature of operation, length of time ethanol sits in it without running, different fueling stations? Who knows without more study and taking notes. But, usually I see an issue and just put a new piece on without making notes.

 

My "experts"  were links to sites (Underhood Service is for professional mechanics) for the other posters asking questions about rubber hose types and to see what are flex fuel operating strategies on newer vehicles. They were not to "teach a bhig old dog new tricks". :D

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On 10/18/2017 at 9:12 PM, Bhigdog said:

I don't know. Everyone seems to bitch about 10% ethanol/gasoline ruining every thing from their cars to their lawn mowers and for all I know their sex life. I have six collector cars, two driver cars, two lawn mowers, two chain saws, a string trimmer, a leaf blower, a stand by generator, and an ATV. They all get whatever the local gas stations are selling. I've  had ZERO issues with any of them that I can even remotely blame on the fuel. When I press the starter or pull the cord they run. When I turn off the spark they stop. They all seem to work very well and last a long time.................Bob

 

When I said I change out the soft parts it's because I have no idea when or if they were ever changed and am not willing to find out the hard way as ethanol WILL turn incompatible soft components to mush.

Beyond that I even quit using additives, such as STA-BIL, because I forgot a few Autumns ago, everything started perfectly when Spring rolled around so why bother?

Ethanol gas has never caused one iota of difficulty for me whether in teens through 50's tractors, 20'-60's cars or lawn equipment.

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The '41 Buick I just bought has a rubber hose in the fuel line, and it's got special fittings on each end.  I just bought one on eBay.  I wish I'd bought two or three of them.  My '39 Specials are hard lined all the way from the gas tank to the carburetor.  So no worry about rubber on them.  I have replaced a lot more fuel pumps on them though in recent years.  Hopefully the newer ones I have were rebuilt more recently using better rubber.  Anyway,  the rubber fuel line piece on the '41 is a new issue I never thought about until now.  I only know that having to have an electric fuel pump in the line for when the car vapor locks going down the highway at 50mph and shuts off is an unnecessary pain in the  you know where just because this Ethanol is forced on us.  Here in Florida a former Governor forced most gas stations to sell it.  I guess it had something to do with the amount of gas the station sells/sold or something like that.  We have one gas station in this town that sells real gas for $1 more than everybody else.  On tour I have to use Ethanol.  I have to buy Startron at Tractor Supply to put in the gas tanks if the car sits over a month.  All of you experts on chemistry can say what you want.  I've got history on my side.  I'm 79 years old and have been driving these old Buicks since 1955 and not one had ever vapor locked until Ethanol came along.  Period.

Edited by Dynaflash8 (see edit history)
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 10% of a lot of things can cause misery. Try adding 10% water every time you fill up and see if it causes any misery. If it doesn't cause any misery you will save 10% on your fuel costs.

 

 15% ethanol is now available and according to Snopes:    " However, several automakers and the American Automobile Association (AAA) have disputed the EPA’s claims, maintaining that E15 could damage fuel lines and void vehicle owners’ warranties in many cars, particularly vehicles manufactured prior to 2012:"  and that is only 5% more.

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Hmm, 10% ethanol in water. make it Bourbon type ethanol and I will test it for you! As sold in special stores (in this state)  it is 40% ethanol in water before I dilute it!

 

The main problems I find with ethanol in fuel tanks is it absorbs water (hence why it is the ingredient in HEET and other fuel anti-ice additives) and the water causes rust in tanks that do not regularly get fresh fuel. i.e. collector cars and parts cars. Recently I noticed my galvanized gas cans (yes they are OLD) have started flaking off the zinc coating inside. I can only assume it is the water in the ethanol doing this, as they lived for years  (40?) holding real gasoline. But I left ethanol gas in them for a year and ....

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On 10/18/2017 at 10:12 PM, Bhigdog said:

I don't know. Everyone seems to bitch about 10% ethanol/gasoline ruining every thing from their cars to their lawn mowers and for all I know their sex life. I have six collector cars, two driver cars, two lawn mowers, two chain saws, a string trimmer, a leaf blower, a stand by generator, and an ATV. They all get whatever the local gas stations are selling. I've  had ZERO issues with any of them that I can even remotely blame on the fuel. When I press the starter or pull the cord they run. When I turn off the spark they stop. They all seem to work very well and last a long time.................Bob

Bob,

 

Bob, I would buy a lottery ticket  for the biggest pot of gold there is; if I were You.  You are a very lucky person.

 

And I am really glad you have had no trouble, I see your avatar shows you are from Eastern PA,  not the same climate as myself; which is Central PA, but close.  Small engine shops, and including my shop  in this area; have experienced all kinds of trouble, starting when the ethanol was used commonly. 

 

A Stihl saw shop, in the area has a huge bucket of carburetors; off of Stihl saws; that were ruined by moisture.  Of course they are aluminum alloy carburetors.  I find the problem more in motorcycle, ATV, carburetors; probably because I work on more of them. Again aluminum alloy carbs.

 

The people that use a certain piece of equipment, daily see less problems with moisture.  The ethanol fuels seem to draw moisture into them, when they set idle.  I have had saws, motorcycles, atvs, etc that would not start not even a chug; only to find that if I drained the fuel system including the carb; giving that no damage was done by the moisture yet; that piece of equipment would start right up. Nothing else done.

 

Some people have tried to let some fuel set on a shelf and see if it separates; I don't rely on those findings.

 

I do rely on what I see, the moisture actually eats out the fuel bowls, turns the aluminum whitish. And on a small engine it doesn't take much to ruin the carb enough to screw-up the flow of fuel.  Again those engines set for maybe weeks at a time, in a unheated shed, or outside.  Yes I have seen fuel line problems and even on some of my equipment.  Unsafe yes, I would say so.  I have a couple of John Deere 400 tractors for lawn mowing; and the engine used is a Kohler K-532 twin.  The fuel line comes up from behind the engine and runs over top of the engine block "Hot engine block"; because the carb is in the center front of the engine . A fuel line failure there would we catastrophic. One tractor I use Aviation fuel and the other I use pump gas.  The aviation fueled one still has original fuel lines; the other has had 2 line changes and 2 new electric fuel pumps. The pumps froze up; and the lines looked like they were going to explode.

 

intimeold

 

I am not a scientist or petroleum engineer ; but as a technician; I am guided by what I see, in the fuel system. 

Edited by intimeold (see edit history)
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14 years of corn licker fuel in my '60 Electra and I was expecting Monsantozoa crawling around in there. Not what  expected at all. And I reused the hoses because my Corbin clamps wouldn't fit the new ones.009.thumb.JPG.68662645559e45436d8906f926f3294c.JPG

 

The problem turned out to be the condenser.

I buy my gas at the same Mobil station. I don't price shop. I don't let the car sit. I run a lot of gas through it. And I keep the garage above freezing and dew point all winter.

 

The pictures are first blush after taking the air horn off.

Bernie

Edited by 60FlatTop (see edit history)
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Replacing a part because it aged out.

Yes I have had to swap out rubber lines that somehow cracked with age, thus leaking.

Maybe wouldn't have failed if it had been on the shelf without any fuel running thru it or if it never sees light.

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All this is anecdotal, I know. As for lottery tickets, been there, done that, zero luck. My two Stihl chain saws are used to cut my fire wood in the fall then what's left in the tank usually is enough to last until next fall. One is about 8 years old. No problems. When I park my X-Mark zero turn mower in the fall I turn off the gas valve and walk away. No problems after 5 years. My Kawasaki Mule ATV sits pretty much all winter with whatever was left in the tank when I parked it. My Stihl leaf blower I use a couple of times a year. When it needs gas I put it in. Other wise it sits. Ditto the Stihl string trimmer.  They both often sit unused with whatever gas is in the tank for months at a time. The standby generator gets the gas changed out once a year. That old gas goes in my 39 Chevy which couldn't care less.

My collector cars spend most of the time in my garage with whatever is in the tank. Usually no more than 1/4 full. I do start them and excise them about once a month. Never had a problem that was fuel related. I keep StaBil in my 2 cycle fuel can and In the fall everything gets a taste of StaBil. Maybe that's the reason I've been "lucky".

Perhaps I'll go out tomorrow and every hose, carb, and tank will be a rotten mass of junk but as of today, right this moment, I have not had one bit of a problem I can plausibly blame on E10 fuel.

So far, when I press the starter or pull the cord they start. When I kill the spark they stop. ...................Bob

 

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I've had two fuel pumps fail due to changing to ethanol gas, the diaphragms wrinkled and split.  A good friend with numerous cars has had fuel line hose fail in days, eaten away by ethanol gas.  There are numerous rubber compounds out there that are not compatible with the 10%, and if you've never had an issue then you're very lucky as stated.

 

As to the open carburetor pictured, the gas still in the bowl looks a little "yeasty" to me.  The ethanol gas will get cloudy as it absorbs water, a friend had a snowblower that wouldn't run on this stuff after sitting for 9 months, ran fine after flushing and new gas put in tank.

 

Mandating ethanol in gas was a huge boondoggle.  Due to having corn production increased and diverted to ethanol production, corn prices went up, acreage was stripped for planting corn, new fertilizer plants were built which further polluted, the list goes on.......an example of something that sounds good but has secondary and tertiary effects that more than offset the perceived benefits....

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I'm not a chemist. Actually, I did horrible in chemistry. In my tractors (equipment from the 50's and 60's) I run cheap gas because the station down the road sells the stuff and I haven't had issues "yet". That being said, the warning labels on e-15 makes me ponder, being only a 5% increase from E-10. From my reading, I think most of the problems come from a vehicle sitting, so before winter I have been getting cans of "real" gas for the equipment I don't use often. I fully admit to not understanding it all, but I treat it seasonally like running kerosene in the real old multi-fuel tractors. Run the cheap stuff spring summer fall and then flush it out with gas when she's going to be sitting. I haven't been running any of it this way for more than a few years though, so I also can't speak for the long term impact.

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